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GetReminded is a free Australian app designed to help you save money by reminding you of significant dates. This could be to avoid late fees by paying your bills on time, or when a contract period ends so you can negotiate a better deal. It can remind you when credit cards expire before you get caught out, or just about any significant date, such as birthdays, anniversaries and more.

While it all sounds great, the important thing to remember about free apps is that developers need to monetise them. Otherwise, they would have no way to cover their costs and make a profit.

So remember, if the product is free, the product is you!

A popular way to do this is with the information that they learn about you. Once they know your interests, for example, you can become a valuable destination for 3rd party advertising. Also, your data could be shared with other companies that the developer does business with. Depending on the app, you may not even be aware of private or intimate information that’s collected about you or who it’s shared with.

How does GetReminded manage your information?

We received a press release about GetReminded, which piqued my interest as I like to promote anything Australian.

Naturally, I went straight past the claims about how much money it can save you to the Privacy Policy. Yep, it was a data-harvesting app that allows GetReminded to shop your interests to the highest bidder. Enter your electricity bill and receive a selection of offers to switch.

Listed below is what I found from publicly available information. The ‘catch 22s‘ are mine (with apologies to Joseph Heller). A catch22 is a paradoxical situation from which an individual cannot escape because of contradictory rules or limitations.

GetReminded PTY LTD (Est July 2017). The app release was May 2019.

Its terms of service state:

GetReminded is a free mobile app and web service that sends automated reminders about an expiring contract, policy, service or event based on a date nominated by the User.

Catch 22: Reminder notifications and emails will include one or more relevant third party advertisements.

Users must first create an Account by using a Facebook or Google profile or by registering with their name and email.

Catch 23: By creating an account, you consent to receive ‘regular reminders”. There is no limit to how many reminders. Elsewhere it states, ‘Users receive a series of emails containing a reminder of a nominated expiry date for a particular contract, policy, service or event. The emails will be sent at various intervals to alert Users about the expiry date and include advertising content related to the contract, policy, service or event.’

Reminder detail screens in the mobile app and in emails sent to your email address may include third-party advertisements that are relevant to the category and type of the nominated reminder. For example, a reminder about a mobile phone contract expiry may include advertising from one or more mobile phone companies.

Catch 24: Well, at least you should not get snail mail, door to door salespeople or phone calls. Or will you?

Users will receive emails and view in-app advertisements that contain links to websites controlled by parties other than GetReminded. GetReminded provides these links as relevant information for its Users… GetReminded is not responsible for and does not endorse, or accept any responsibility for, the use or content of these third-party sites.